California to vote on halt to emissions law

The California Trucking Association is supporting a November ballot measure to temporarily suspend the state’s global warming law until the unemployment rate returns to 5.5 percent for a year.

Proposition 23 would, for a time, halt California’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, or Assembly Bill 32, including its cap-and-trade program and the state’s low-carbon fuel standard.

If voters approve the proposition, also called the California Jobs Initiative, AB 32 measures would be delayed, including the port trucks requirement to meet increasingly strict emissions standards, starting last December and ending at the strictest level in 2012.

Another rule that would be delayed is truck hybridization, which requires existing trucks and trailers to be retrofitted with technology to reduce emission and improve fuel efficiency, starting this year. 

Yes on 23, a coalition of governmental officials and companies including transportation, energy and forestry, say the proposition will save more than a million jobs that would otherwise be lost by sparing employers the costs of AB 32 compliance.

Conversely, the University of California’s law school at Berkeley reported the proposition would create legal uncertainty, reduce state revenue, and jeopardize clean energy jobs. That Sept. 9 white paper also states it would slow California’s climate change reduction efforts and could have a domino effect on other states.